Years after the liberation of Drezen by the World Class Wrecking Crew and their armies, long after the keep had undergone extensive renovations and repairs, it has become a destination of choice for travelers and pilgrims. People from across Golarion come to see the places where the war against the demons was fought, and where the tide was turned, and perhaps to feel closer to the heroes who’d done the fighting. Tours are given daily at 10am and 2pm. Tickets can be purchased at the Front Gate, and tours begin on the bridge promptly at the scheduled time.
“That’s right – that was where Sturn rallied the Crew against the ghouls,” the guide said to the young boy, who was nearly attached to the man’s hip, so enraptured by the tales of battle and heroism.
“Ladies and gentlemen, if you’d move to your left as you fill the room – that’s right, go all the way to the far wall so there’s enough room for everyone,” the man said, a little louder this time, as he addressed the stream of people slowing flowing into the chapel. Positioning himself in front of the dais, which was to his left, he waited until everyone was in the room. The group, of about 20, stretched from the entryway to the back wall, with a few people standing forward of the wall, at the edges of the pews.
“After Atiasi disappeared, the Crew reunited with Jaroo and pressed forward into this chapel, which you can see was originally dedicated to Iomedae,” he said as he gestured toward the front wall, on which there was a partially-damaged icon of the goddess. “The church decided to not repair some of the damage, in order to show future generations the depths to which the demon hordes and their followers stooped when they controlled the keep. You can see stains from the soiling and blood here and here,” he pointed, “and again the gouges we’ve seen elsewhere, where they tried to destroy the base-reliefs and frescoes.”
The guide went on for a few minutes about how the demons had vandalized and sought to desecrate the temple, which was now restored, fielding a few questions about art and architecture along the way.
“Now, the real importance of this room is much greater than the art – we all know this from the histories,” he said, changing his tone to a more solemn one.
“When the Crew entered this chapel they found – right here – a succubus and four of her fallen crusader followers, engaged in some fell ritual…” he said, just before being cut off by the boy who’d asked him about the ghouls earlier.
“Wasn’t she disguised as the goddess? And didn’t Jaroo turn into a wind storm here?” he interjected excitedly. His mother, embarrassed, tried to quietly shssh him, but he got out both questions before being silenced.
The guide chuckled and gave his signature upside-down Bill Clinton smile before responding. “Yes, that’s exactly what happened – you know your history well, young man!” he said before giving another well-rehearsed chuckle while thinking ‘stupid brat’s going to steal my thunder…this is my tour!’
“Yes, he’s quite right. The succubus had used her demonic powers to disguise herself and dominate the wills of several crusaders, but truth to be told, we all know that true knights of Iomedae would have known, deep inside, that this was not their goddess. No, this was another example of warriors choosing the wrong side in order to save their own skins, instead of standing up for what’s right,” after which he paused and nodded, furrowing his brow as if in deep thought. The group followed suit.
“The Crew had no such issues. As we know it, Jaroo took the form of a whirlwind and fixed the demon in place while the others rushed into the room and attacked both her and her followers. The fight was quick and decisive, and gave the Crew a little breathing room, and time to search the chapel. Dwarves, as well all know, are famous for a few things their knowledge of stonework and their…interest…in jewels and money,” he said, ending those last words with a wry smile, which evoked knowing chuckles from the group.
“And so they searched this very room for anything of value, or hidden chambers…” he said as he started moving around, as if to search the room himself. “Sometimes hidden chambers are accessed through doors merely covered by something obvious….like a pew,” he said as he dramatically pushed aside one bench, revealing only a stone floor. He shook his head as if frustrated by not finding anything. By this point he’d moved to the back wall and was feeling around the stones, moving his fingers in the way that, he imagined, a master rogue might do when looking for a secret door.
“Maybe here…no…or…” he said, as if losing himself in the real work of seeking a secret button or lever. The group fell silent, completely taken in by his theatrics. “There….” he said at last, pushing a concealed button, which in turn opened a secret door.
“Right here is where they found that very coffin, in which was locked Havic, the elven wizard,” he said as he moved into the newly-opened chamber. For the next few minutes he recounted the tale of how they’d rescued and became acquainted with the wizard, and then fought a mimic in the next room, and recovered some really great armor.
The group eventually filed out of the small side chambers and down some halls outside of the chapel, leading them into the barracks, where the guide went on to describe the awful carnage wrought by Flun’kay the Kellid Barbarian woman on her own troops. He took great delight in describing the horrific treatment that demons’ minions showed to each other, making sure to drive home the moral dimension of the tour.
“…So this is where Sturn again showed both the mercy and justice of Iomedae to an enemy, and the Crew maintained their own moral foundations, while still relentlessly pressing the fight deeper into demon territory,” the guide explained as they finished their stop in the large barracks room.
“Now as we move into the next room, you’ll notice to your right…”